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Is your family prepared to weather the first three days of a disaster?

Posted April 13, 2018

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American Red Cross backpack and emergency supplies
The American Red Cross recommends each household have a backpack with emergency supplies for emergencies.

It’s spring in North Central Texas, and that means residents should be ready for strong thunderstorms, tornados, flash floods, wind damage and hail.

If Mother Nature turns extremely violent and causes massive damage, you might be isolated while first responders work their way to your area. Are you prepared to spend three or more days on your own with no water, power, transportation, medical help, or communication with the outside world?

Being prepared for any type of local hazard is beneficial and might determine how well you and your family fare if a natural or man-made disaster were to strike in Fort Worth. You can improve your odds by building a 72-hour emergency kit and creating communication and evacuation plans now.

Build your family’s kit

A 72-hour emergency kit should include:

  • Food.
  • Water.
  • First aid kit.
  • Flashlights and extra batteries.
  • NOAA All Hazards Weather radio.
  • Cell phone charger, cable and/or fully charged power bank.
  • Dust masks.
  • Personal hygiene and cleaning supplies.
  • Medications (minimum of seven days).
  • Whistle.
  • Tools (plyers, screwdriver, wrench).
  • Important documents (deed, marriage license, birth certificates, Social Security number, driver license, etc.).
  • Cash (small denominations).
  • Can opener.

If you have a family member with a special need, a baby or pet in your family, pack items to meet the needs of that individual or animal, such as medical equipment, bottles and formula, baby food, diapers, wipes, pet food, treats and toys.

Create a communications plan

Know how you will contact family members if you are separated when a disaster strikes:

  • Program family cell phone numbers into your phone. Write them on paper for the emergency kit.
  • Twitter or other social media platforms may prove beneficial if communications are functional.
  • Have an out-of-the-area family member act as a point of contact for family members. It may be easier to contact someone out of town if local communications are compromised.
  • All family members should know where to physically meet in an emergency situation — at a local store, family friend’s home, government building, so on.

Make an evacuation plan for your family

  • Choose several destinations where you can go if you are instructed to evacuate your residence. You may need to simply move across town or perhaps to a location several hundred miles away.
  • Try to have a least half a tank of fuel in your vehicle at all times.
  • Build an emergency kit for your vehicle that includes water, first aid, snacks, important contact numbers, cell phone charger and seasonal items such as sunscreen and insect spray for summer, gloves and blankets for winter.

Get more information on emergency preparedness.

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Workforce Solutions Youth Advisory Council: 9 a.m. Feb. 19, 2019; Board Large Conference Room, 1320 S. University Dr Suite 600.
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Canceled Audit Committee: 1 p.m. Feb. 19, 2019; City Council Conference Room 290, Second Floor, City Hall, 200 Texas Street.

Canceled Fort Worth Local Development Corporation: 2 p.m. Feb. 19, 2019; City Council Conference Room 290, Second Floor, City Hall, 200 Texas Street.

Canceled Central City Local Government Corporation: 2 p.m. Feb. 19, 2019; City Council Conference Room 290, Second Floor, City Hall, 200 Texas Street.

Canceled AllianceAirport Authority: 2 p.m. Feb. 19, 2019; City Council Conference Room 290, Second Floor, City Hall, 200 Texas Street.

Canceled Lone Star Local Government Corporation: 2 p.m. Feb. 19, 2019; City Council Conference Room 290, Second Floor, City Hall, 200 Texas Street.

Canceled City Council Work Session: 3 p.m. Feb. 19, 2019; City Council Conference Room 290, Second Floor, City Hall, 200 Texas Street.

Community Meeting: 6:30 p.m. Feb. 19, 2019; Northside Community Center, 1100 NW 18 St.

Canceled City Council Meeting: 7 p.m. Feb. 19, 2019; City Council Chambers, Second Floor, City Hall, 200 Texas Street.

Commercial Board of Adjustment Work Session: 9 a.m. Feb. 20, 2019; City Hall, Second Floor, City Council Conference Room 290, 200 Texas Street.
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Commercial Board of Adjustment Public Hearing: 10 a.m. Feb. 20, 2019; City Hall, Second Floor, City Council Chamber, 200 Texas Street.
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Residential Board of Adjustment Work Session: 12:30 p.m. Feb. 20, 2019; City Hall, Second Floor, City Council Conference Room 290, 200 Texas Street.
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Fort Worth Professional Fire Fighters Association Collective Bargaining Negotiations: 1 p.m. Feb. 20, 2019; IAFF Local 440 Office, 3855 Tulsa Way.
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Residential Board of Adjustment Public Hearing: 1:30 p.m. Feb. 20, 2019; City Hall, Second Floor, City Councill Chamber, 200 Texas Street.
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Urban Design Commission Work Session: 9:30 a.m. Feb. 21, 2019; City Hall, Second Floor, City Council Conference Room 290, 200 Texas Street.
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Urban Design Commission Public Hearing: 10 a.m. Feb. 21, 2019; City Hall, Second Floor, City Council Conference Room 290, 200 Texas Street.
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Black History Program at Southside Community Center: 11 a.m. Feb. 21, 2019; Southside Community Center, 959 E. Rosedale.

Workforce Delivery Systems Committee: noon Feb. 21, 2019; Board Large Conference Room, 1320 S. Univeristy Drive Suite 600.
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Black History Program at Hillside Community Center: 6 p.m. Feb. 21, 2019; Hillside Community Center, 1201 E. Maddox.

Property Taxes 101 Workshop: 6:30 p.m. Feb. 21, 2019; Northside Community Center, 1100 NW 18th St.

Deferred Compensation Oversight Committee: 9 a.m. Feb. 22, 2019; Fort Worth Credit Union Board Room, 2309 Montgomery Street, Fort Worth, Texas 76107.
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